South Lanarkshire Council throws out plans for 100m-tall turbines near village

Plans to build two 100m-tall wind turbines half a kilometre from Boghead have been thrown out by South Lanarkshire Council.

More than 40 people had objected to the plans by HBY2 Ltd, with concerns that the development could have a “dominant and overbearing presence” on the village.

Councillors unanimously agreed to reject the proposals at a meeting of the planning committee this week.

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Previous plans for three turbines at the site near Dunduff Quarry were refused in June 2020, before an appeal was also thrown out by Scottish Ministers.

The main difference between the two plans was the removal of the turbine closest to Boghead and the inclusion of a new battery storage facility.

National Air Traffic Systems (NATS) objected to both proposals on the grounds of aviation safety as the turbines could interfere with air traffic radar systems.

However, following the appeal to Scottish Minister, this would not be a valid ground for refusal as the applicant and NATS should be able to find a solution to any potential radar interference.

Despite the removal of the third turbine, planners considered that the development would “still dominate and over tower the village” which would have a “significantly detrimental effect” on residents.

Tony Finn, planning and building standards manager, told the committee: “An application for three 100m wind turbines and associated infrastructure was refused by planning committee on June 23 last year.

“The reason’s for refusal were based on the unacceptable visual and cumulative impact on the landscape character.

“Secondly, the unacceptable impact on visual and residential amenity on residents of Boghead.

“Thirdly the proposals would result in shadow flicker for a significant number of properties and appropriate mitigation hadn’t been proposed at that point.

“And finally that the proposals would have an adverse impact on aviation safety and appropriate mitigation hadn’t been proposed.

“That decision was subject to an appeal of Scottish Ministers. The reporter who heard the appeal dismissed the appeal and maintained the refusal of planning permission.

“However, in reaching that decision, the reporter did not agree with all of the council’s reason’s for refusal and based their decision on the proposal having an unacceptably detrimental affect on living conditions of a number of properties in Boghead.

“The reporter also took the view that the issues of shadow flicker and the impact on air safety could both be dealt with by conditions. If committee was minded to grant consent, those matters could be dealt with by conditions.

“The reporter agreed with the councils view that the turbines would be visually dominant and have an overbearing impact.

“The applicant has sought to address that by reducing the number of turbines to two with the closest turbine removed.

South Lanarkshire Council throws out plans for 100m-tall turbines near village

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“However, an assessment of this revised scheme considers that the current proposals would still dominate and overwhelm the village of Boghead.

“At a height of 100m to tip on an elevated position, they would create an overbearing presence that would be significantly detrimental to the residential amenity of Boghead.”

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